Understanding Sustainability

Sustainability References



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Angresano, James. 1997. The Political Economy of Gunnar Myrdal: The Institutional Basis for the Transformation Problem. Edward Elgar, London. [review by Bo Sandelin]

Appleton, Albert F. 2006. "Sustainability: A practitioner's reflection." Technology in Society 28(1):3-18.

  • Abstract. "This article presents a practitioner's reflections on sustainability. What is most striking about sustainability and sustainable development is the speed with which these concepts have been seized upon and have changed the intellectual environment. The explanation for this lies in the history of the environmental movement between the time it came of age in 1970 and when sustainability emerged, in the late eighties and early nineties. This was a period of clash between environmental and economic interests that ended in a stalemate, with the environmentalists establishing that the environmental crisis was real, but environmental opponents blocking action that would have addressed it at the cost of sacrificing economic growth and the elimination of poverty. Sustainability offered a way around that stalemate and opened up a new era of innovative discussion by providing a formula that legitimized for each side the other's fundamental interest, conceding the need to both meet human needs while not sacrificing the environmental resources future generations will need. This transformation of the environmental dialogue is a positive and important event that will hopefully produce a new period of environmental productivity much like the seventies even though, if the logic of sustainability is applied to problems like the loss of biodiversity, the use of petroleum resources and global warming, sustainability seems to be an impossible goal. In truth, sustainability is likely to be much more immediately productive in areas of pollution management and resource consumption than in areas like biodiversity where species and resources are irrevocably lost. But until the potential of the concept is exhausted, it offers the best path forward for both environmental and economic interests."

Arimatéia da Cruz, José de. 2008. "Africa in the Neo-Liberal World (Dis)Order." (Review Essay). Journal of Third World Studies Fall. Review of: Bond, Patrick, 2006, Looting Africa: The Economics of Exploitation, Zed Books, New York; Chang, Ha-Joon, 2002, Kicking Away the Ladder: Development Strategy in Historical Perspective, Anthem, London; Ferguson, James, 2006, Global Shadows: Africa in the Neoliberal World Order, Duke University Press, Durham; Madley, John, 2000, Hungry for Trade: How the Poor Pay for Free Trade, Zed Books, New York; and Torres, Raymond, 2001, Towards a Socially Sustainable World Economy: An Analysis of the Social Pillars of Globalization, ILO, Geneva.

Arrighi, Giovanni and Kevin Harris. 2012. "Special Contribution: Interview with Giovanni Arrighi: 'At Some Point Something Has To Give' – Declining U.S. Power, the Rise of China, and an Adam Smith for the Contemporary Left." Journal of World-Systems Research 18(2):157-166. [PDF

Arrighi, Giovanni. 2010 (First in 1994). The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origins of Our Times. Verso, London. [review article by John Gulick (PDF)] [author interview (PDF)] [related China Study blog with John Gulick]

Báez, Antonio Carmona. 2013. "Nationalising Dignity: Morales’ Adios to USAID.The expulsion of USAID by Bolivia’s president Evo Morales should should come as no surprise to those following political change in Bolivia." The Broker 7 May.

Barbier, Edward. 1989. Economics, Natural Resource Scarcity, and Development. Earthscan, London.

Barham, B.L. and O.T. Coomes. 1996. Prosperity's Promise: The Amazon Rubber Boom and Distorted Development. Westview Press, Boulder, Colorado.

Beitz, Charles. 2009. The Idea of Human Rights. Oxford University Press, Oxford. [review (PDF)]

Belser, Patrick. 2005. "Forced Labor and Human Trafficking: Estimating the Profits." Working Paper #42, International Labour Office, Geneva. [PDF]

Bullard, Robert D. and Beverly Wright (eds.). 2009. Race, Place, and Environmental Justice after Hurricane Katrina. Westview Press, Boulder. 

Bunker, Stephen G. 1985. Underdeveloping the Amazon: Extraction, Unequal Exchange, and the Failure of the Modern State. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Cardoso, Fernando Henrique and Enzo Faletto. 1969 [and 1979]. Dependency and Development in Latin America. University of California Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles.

Cardoso, Fernando Henrique. 2009. "New paths: Globalization in historical perspective." Studies in Comparative International Development 44(4):296-317. [PDF]

Cernea, Michael M. (ed.). 1985. Putting People First: Sociological Variables in Rural Development, Second Edition. Oxford University Press, Oxford. [PDF]

Chang, Ha-Joon. 2002. Kicking Away the Ladder: Development Strategy in Historical Perspective. Anthem Press, London. [related essay by author] [related article by author in Foreign Policy in Focus (PDF)] [summary (PDF)] [review 1] [review by Arne Ruckert (PDF)

Ciccantell, Paul S. and Stephen G. Bunker. 2004. "The Economic Ascent of China and the Potential for Restructuring the Capitalist World-Economy." Journal of World-systems Research 10(3):565-589. [PDF]

Clark, John D. 1991. Democratizing Development: The Role of Voluntary Organizations. Kumarian Press, West Hartford.

Collier, Paul. 2008. The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and what Can Be Done about it. Oxford University Press, New York. [review in The New York Times] [review in The Guardian] [Collier presenation on TedTalks]

Cowen, Tyler. 2013. Average Is Over: Powering America Beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation. Penguin, New York. [podcast interview on Wisconsin Public Radio]

Davis, Mike. 2007. Planet of Slums. Verso, London. [review]

Davis, Shelton H. 1977. Victims of the Miracle: Development and the Indians of Brazil. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

de Soto, Hernando. 1989. The Other Path: The Invisible Revolution in the Third World. HarperCollins,New York. [related video]

Domingues, José Maurício. 2011. "Revisiting Dependency and Development in Latin America." Ciência & Trópico 65(2):753-780. 

Doyal, Len and Ian Gough. 1991. A Theory of Human Need. Guilford, New York. 

Ellis, Frank. 1993. Peasant Economics: Farm Households and Agrarian Development, 2nd Edition. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Farvar, M.T. and J.P. Milton (eds.). 1972. The Careless Technology: Ecology and International Development. Natural History Press, Garden City, New York.

Florida, Richard. 2009. "How the Crash Will Reshape America." The Atlantic March.

Frank, Andre Gunder. 1966. "The Development of Underdevelopment." Monthly Review 18:17-31. [PDF]

Frank, Andre Gunder. 1969. Capitalism and Underdevelopment in Latin America: Historical Studies of Chile and Brazil. Monthly Review Press, New York. [description] [complete book in Spanish]

Frank, Andre Gunder. 1979. Dependent Accumulation and Underdevelopment. Monthly Review Press, New York.

Frank, Robert H. 2011. The Darwin Economy: Liberty, Competition, and the Common Good. Princeton University Press, Princeton. [related story by Frank in Slate] [related paper by Frank et a.]

Frova, Giulia. 2011. "Five Decades of Development Debate on Sustainability." Development 54(2):271-281. [PDF

Gaile, G.L. 1980. "The spread-backwash concept." Regional Studies 14(1):15-25. 

Galster, George. 2012. Driving Detroit: The Quest for Respect in the Motor City. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia. 

Gasper, Des. 2011. "Pioneering the Human Development Revolution: Analysing the Trajectory of Mahbub ul Haq (Review Essay)." Journal of Human Development and Capabilities: A Multi-Disciplinary Journal for People-Centered Development 12(3):433-456. [PDF]

Ghosh, P.K. (ed.). 1984. Third World Development: A Basic Needs Approach. Greenwood Press, Westport, Connecticut.

Gibson-Graham, J.K., Jenny Cameron, and Stephen Healy. 2013. Take Back the Economy: An Ethical Guide for Transforming Our Communities. University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis. [review by P. North in Antipode (PDF)] [related video lecture by Gidson]

Gowdy, John and Susan Mesner. 1998. "The Evolution of Georgescu-Roegen's Bioeconomics." Review of Social Economy 56(2):136-156. [PDF

Green, Gary Paul and Anna Haines. 2007. Asset Building and Community Development, 2nd Edition. Sage, Thousand Oaks, California.

Gulick, John. "The Long Twentieth Century and Barriers to China’s Hegemonic Accession." [Review essay of Giovanni Arrighi’s (1994,2010), The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origins of Our Times]. Journal of World-Systems Research 18(2):4-38. [PDF] [China Study blog by Gulic]

Haq,  K. and U.  Kirdar (eds.). 1986. Human  Development: The  Neglected  Dimension. North  South Roundtable, Islamabad.

Haq, Mahbub ul. 1976. The Poverty Curtain: Choices for the Third World. Columbia University Press, New York. [related review essay by Des Gasper (PDF)

Haq, Mahbub ul. 1977. "Toward a Just Society." Ch.18 in K. Haq (ed.), Equality of Opportunity within and Among Nations. Praeger, New York.

Harry W. Richardson. 2007. "Growth Pole Spillovers: the dynamics of backwash and spread." Regional Studies 41(S1):S27-S35. [PDF

Hedges, Chris.  2015. "The Great Unraveling." Truth Dig 30 August.

Hendrik Denker, Thomas Bonschab, Jutta Wagner, and Ulrike Haupt. 2007. "Social and ecological Market economy Principles in German Development Policy." Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Bonn and Berlin. [PDF]

Howard, Philip and Thomas F. Homer-Dixon. 1996. "Environmental Scarcity and Violent Conflict: The Case of Chiapas, Mexico." Occasional Paper, Project on Environment, Population and Security, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C. and the University of Toronto. [PDF]

ILO. 1977. Meeting Basic Needs: Strategies for Eradicating Mass Poverty and Unemployment. ILO, Geneva. [abstract]

Irogbe, Kema. 2005. "Globalization and the Development of Underdevelopment of the Third World." Journal of Third World Studies 22(1):41-68.

Isbister, John. 1998. Promises not Kept: The Betrayal of Social Change in the Third World. Kumarian Press, West Hartford.

Kaplan, Robert D. 1994. "The Coming Anarchy: How Scarcity, Crime, Overpopulation, Tribalism, and Disease Are Rapidly Destroying the Social Fabric of Our Planet." The Atlantic Monthly 273(2):44-76. [related academic article by Thomas Homer-Dixon (PDF)]

  • "Much of the Arab world, however, will undergo alteration, as Islam spreads across artificial frontiers, fueled by mass migrations into the cities and a soaring birth rate of more than 3.2 percent. Seventy percent of the Arab population has been born since 1970—youths with little historical memory of anticolonial independence struggles, postcolonial attempts at nation-building, or any of the Arab-Israeli wars. The most distant recollection of these youths will be the West’s humiliation of colonially invented Iraq in 1991. Today seventeen out of twenty-two Arab states have a declining gross national product; in the next twenty years, at current growth rates, the population of many Arab countries will double. These states, like most African ones, will be ungovernable through conventional secular ideologies. The Middle East analyst Christine M. Helms explains, 'Declaring Arab nationalism 'bankrupt,' the political 'disinherited' are not rationalizing the failure of Arabism . . . or reformulating it. Alternative solutions are not contemplated. They have simply opted for the political paradigm at the other end of the political spectrum with which they are familiar—Islam.'
  • Like the borders of West Africa, the colonial borders of Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Algeria, and other Arab states are often contrary to cultural and political reality. As state control mechanisms wither in the face of environmental and demographic stress, 'hard' Islamic city-states or shantytown-states are likely to emerge. The fiction that the impoverished city of Algiers, on the Mediterranean, controls Tamanrasset, deep in the Algerian Sahara, cannot obtain forever. Whatever the outcome of the peace process, Israel is destined to be a Jewish ethnic fortress amid a vast and volatile realm of Islam. In that realm, the violent youth culture of the Gaza shantytowns may be indicative of the coming era."

Kaup, Brent Z. 2013. "In Spaces of Marginalization: Dispossession, Incorporation, and Resistance in Bolivia." Journal of World Systems Research 14(1):108-129. [PDF]

Kay, Cristóbal. 1989. Latin American Theories of Development and Underdevelopment. Routledge, London.

Kozol, Jonathan. 1991. Savage Inequalities: Children in America's Schools . [Wikipedia summary]

Massey, Douglas and Nancy Denton. 1993. American Apartheid: Segregation and the Making of the Underclass. Harvard University Press, Cambridge. 

Max-Neef, Manfred. 2010. "The World on a Collision Course and the Need for a New Economy." Ambio 39(3):200-210. [PDF]

Mayumi, Kozo and John M. Gowdy (eds.). 1999. Bioeconomics and Sustainability: Essays in Honor of Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, U.K.

Mayumi, Kozo. 2009. "Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen: His Bioeconomics Approach to Development and Change." Development and Change 40(6):1235-1254. 

Myrdal, Gunnar. 1957. Economic Theory and Underdeveloped Regions. Methuen, London. [review (PDF)] [chapter 3 (PDF)]

Myrdal, Gunnar. 1968. Asian Drama: An Inquiry into the Poverty of Nations. Pantheon, New York.

Nederveen Pieterse, Jan. 1998. "My Paradigm or Yours? Alternative Development, Post-Development, Reflexive Development." Development and Change 29:343-373. [PDF]

Nederveen Pieterse, Jan. 2000. "After Post-Development." Third World Quarterly 21(2):175-191. [PDF]

New Economics Institute. "Wealth Inequality in America." New Economics Institute, Cambridge.

Norgaard, Richard B. 1994. Development Betrayed: The End of Progress and a Co-Evolutionary Revisioning of the Future. Routledge, London. 

Nugent, David (ed.). 2002. Locating Capitalism in Time and Space: Global Restructurings, Politics, and Identity. Stanford University Press, Redwood City, California.

Perera, Victor. 1995. Unfinished Conquest: The Guatemalan Tragedy. University of California Press, Berkeley. [review 1] [review 2]

Population Reference Bureau. 2012. 2012 World Population Data Sheet. Population Reference Bureau, Washington, D.C. [PDF]

Rist, Gilbert. 1980. "Alternative strategies to development." International Development Review 2-3:102-115.

Rist, Gilbert. 2007. "Development as a buzzword." Development in Practice 17(4-5):485-491. [PDF

Rivkin, Malcom D. 1963. "Let's think small for development." International Development Review 5(1):24-28. 

Sachs, Jeffrey D. 2005a. The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time. Penguin, New York.  [related presentation by Sachs] [review by William Easterly in the Washington Post] [review by Charles Francis in Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems (PDF)]

Sachs, Jeffrey D. 2010. "America’s Deepening Moral Crisis." Project Syndicate 30 September.

Sachs, Jeffrey D., Andrew D. Mellinger, and John L. Gallup. 2001. "The Geography of Poverty and Wealth." Scientific American March.  [PDF]

Santos, Rui, Paula Antunes, Gualter Baptista, Pedro Mateus, and Luísa Madruga. 2006. "Stakeholder participation in the design of environmental policy mixes." Ecological Economics 60(1):100–110. 

Schlesinger, Stephen, Stephen Kinzer, John H. Coatsworth, and Richard A. Nuccio. 2005. Bitter Fruit: The Story of the American Coup in Guatemala, Revised and Expanded Edition. David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, Harvard University, Cambridge. [review]

Schnaiberg, Alan and Ken Gould. 1994. Environment and Society: The Enduring Conflict. St. Martin's Press, New York. (Reprinted in 2000 by Blackburn Press, Caldwell, New Jersey.)

  • Schnaiberg and Gould point to recycling on college campuses as an example of how campus administrations appease students and other campus advocates with feel-good initiatives. Students get involved in recycling because it is relatively easy to manage and generally well accepted by administrations eager to do the right thing, but less willing to make more substantive changes in the day to-day operations of their institutions. While the authors point out that recycling is generally good, they argue that it does little to alter what they call the "treadmill of production," and that it is more important to reduce consumption.

Sen, Amartya. 1983. "Poor, Relatively Speaking." Oxford Economic Papers 35(2):153-169. [PDF]

Shiva, Vandana. 2013. "How economic growth has become anti-life. An obsession with growth has eclipsed our concern for sustainability, justice and human dignity. But people are not disposable – the value of life lies outside economic development." The Guardian 1 November.

Smith, Philip B. and Manfred Max-Neef. 2011.  Economics Unmasked: From Power and Greed to Compassion and the Common Good. Green Books, Devon, U.K. [Chapter 9, "The World on a Collision Course and the Need for a New Economy"] [related paper by Max-Neef (PDF)] [related paper by Max-Neef and others in Cuadernos de Lanki (PDF)

Smolin, David M. 2006. "Child Laundering: How the Intercountry Adoption System Legitimizes and Incentivizes the Practices of Buying, Trafficking, Kidnapping, and Stealing Children." Wayne Law Review 52:113-200. [PDF]

Soubbotina, Tatyana P. 2004. Beyond Economic Growth: An Introduction to Sustainable Development, Second Edition. The World Bank, Washington, D.C. [HTML version with PDF available]

Theobold, R. 1990. Corruption, Development and Underdevelopment. Macmillan, London.

Udall, Steward L. 1963. The Quiet Crisis and the Next Generation. Peregrine Smith, Salt Lake City.

Udall, Stewart L. 1963. "The Conservation Challenge of the Sixties." Albright Lecture, University of California Berkeley, 19 April, Berkeley, California. 

  • "But the erosion of our environment will continue unless we make public rights paramount, which means that we put the future first. The conservation of man, through the conservation of his environment, must become a major national objective and the pursuit of "progress" and the pursuit of happiness must be harmonized if, in the long run, our society is to flourish."
  • "The sad fact is that the 19th century Myth of Superabundance - the idea that we have such unending resources of forests and soil that it didn't matter how we dealt with them as husbandmen - has been supplanted by what we might call the Myth of Scientific Supremacy. Striding about as supermen, we tolerate great imbalances in resource uses, and shrug off the newer forms of erosion with a let-science-fix-it-tomorrow attitude. This rationalization is potentially as destructive as the mischievous rain follows-the-plow slogan of those who a few decades ago turned the land of the Great Plains into a Dust Bowl. Regrettably, the very men who are quickest to rely on the Myth of Scientific Supremacy are the same men who are usually opposed, or grounds of 'economy', to the investment of public funds an the voting of public laws to do the conservation work of today."

UNCTAD. 2010. The Least Developed Countries Report, 2010: Towards a New International Development Architecture for LDCs. United nations Conference on Trade and the Emvironment (UNCTAD), Geneva. [news article]

UNDP. 1990. Human Development Report 1990. United Nations Development Program (UNDP). Oxford University Press, Oxford.

"Human development is a process of enlarging people's choices. The most critical of these wide-ranging choices are to live a long and healthy life, to be educated and to have access to resources needed for a decent standard of living. Additional choices include political freedom, guaranteed human rights and personal self-respect."

"Development enables people to have these choices. No one can guarantee human happiness, and the choices people make are their own concern. But the process of development should at least create a conducive environment for people, individually and collectively, to develop their full potential and to have a reasonable chance of leading productive and creative lives in accord with their needs and interests."

UNDP. 1994. Human Development Report 1994: New Dimensions of Human Security. United Nations Development Program (UNDP). Oxford University Press, New York.

UNDP. 2013. Human Development Report 2013 – The Rise of the South: Human Progress in a Diverse World. United Nations Development Program (UNDP), New York. [PDF] [summary (PDF)]

Vallance, Suzanne, Harvey C. Perkins, and Jennifer E. Dixon. 2011. "What is social sustainability? A clarification of concepts." Geoforum 42(3):342-348. 

Vivero, Jose Luis and Pablo Ramírez. 2009. "Hambre, derechos humanos y la consolidación del Estado en América Latina." Pags 41-75 (Capítulo 2) in Jose Luis Vivero and Ximena Erazo (eds.), Derecho a la Alimentación, Políticas Públicas e Instituciones contra el Hambre. Ediciones LOM, Santiago, Chile. 

Wallerstein, Immanuel. 1974. The Modern World System I: Capitalist Agriculture and the Origins of the European World Economy in the Sixteenth Century. Academic Press, New York.

Wallerstein, Immanuel. 2004. "After Developmentalism and Globalization, What?" Keynote address at the Development Challenges for the 21st Century Conference, Cornell University, Ithaca, 1 October. [PDF]

Wilkinson, Richard and Kate Pickett. 2009. The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger. Bloomsbury, New York. [excerpt][review] [presentation by Wilkinson on TedTalks]

Wood, Charles H. and Marianne Schmink. 1978. "Blaming the Victim: Small Farmer Production in an Amazon Colonization Project." Studies in Third World Societies 7:77-93.

World Development. The Multi-Disciplinary International Journal Devoted to the Study and Promotion of World Development. "World Development is a multi-disciplinary monthly journal ofdevelopment studies. It seeks to explore ways of improving standards of living, and the human condition generally, by examining potential solutions to problems such as: poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, disease, lack of shelter, environmental degradation, inadequate scientific and technological resources, trade and payments imbalances, international debt, gender and ethnic discrimination, militarism and civil conflict, and lack of popular participation in economic and political life."

You, Danzhen, Phillip Bastian, Jingxian Wu, and Tessa Wardlaw. 2013. Levels and Trends in Child Mortality. Report 2013, Estimates Developed by the UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation. United Nations Children’s Fund, New York. [PDF]

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